The weight of debt brings with it a number of consequences for individuals and families, chief among these is the negative impact that it has upon the physical and mental health of those experiencing it. Those dealing with debt can suffer increased levels of stress and anxiety, while the sacrifices made by those in debt, such as on fuel costs and food, further impact on their general health and wellbeing.
Considering that we live in a capitalistic society where everything revolves around the money, it has become complicated to get out of debt. The major issues many young people are facing nowadays is how to find jobs and become homeowners. The mortgage rates are incredibly high, and if you are let go from your work, then you will be faced with many financial troubles. In this case, the mental health of young individuals is at risk. In addition to this, even older generations are facing the same problems, the debt can lead you to have severe psychological issues, and many people have committed suicide because of it.
Flashpoints such as the birth of a child, divorce, bereavement or long-term illness can trigger severe debt problems, and those who find themselves facing over-indebtedness often experience adverse effects on their physical and mental health such as increased stress, low self-esteem, breakdown of relationships, and in exceptional circumstances loss of employment.
However, the problem is not only one-sided: Those who already experience poor health or disability on a long-term basis are more likely to find their earnings or potential to work curtailed. One in three people with a serious mental health problem is in debt and they are three times more likely to be in debt than people without similar conditions. ¹
The Centre for Health (WCfH) was commissioned by the former Minister for Health and Social Services to examine how health and social services professionals could play a role in relation to the recommendations of the Review of Over-Indebtedness Report 2005. The WCfH brought together an expert Key Stakeholder Group in order to share knowledge and direct research into this important issue. To learn more about the project and interventions being undertaken in the U.S. and get project updates as the research continues visit the links between over-indebtedness and health pages on the WCfH website.